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3/10/22 blog post

benefits of breastmilk for mom and baby

Breastmilk is complete nutrition. It’s a perfect mix of water, vitamins and minerals, carbohydrates, protein and fat as well as disease fighting properties. Mother’s milk will actually change to meet babies’ growing nutritional and developmental needs. How cool to think that mom’s body knows what baby needs!

some advantages to breastfeeding for baby:

  • Helps baby’s brain and nervous system develop optimally.
  • Studies show that breastfed babies score higher on intelligence tests.
  • The nutrients in breastmilk help baby’s immune system function at its best; protecting babies from many serious health problems such as SIDS, asthma, digestive issues, allergies, diabetes, obesity, ear infections and even certain cancers.
  • Even after weaning, studies find that breastfed babies have fewer long-term health issues.

Breastfeeding is so important that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that babies breastfeed exclusively for the first 6 months of life, and continue with complimentary foods to 1 year of life and beyond.

some advantages to breastfeeding for mom:

  • Helps reduce moms’ risk of certain cancers like breast and ovarian as well as decrease chances of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
  • Initiating breastfeeding after birth helps mom heal faster.
  • Generally, mothers who exclusively breastfeed tend to have better mental health e.g. better sleep and decreased risk of depression.
  • The emotional and physical connection a mother and baby share during breastfeeding is a uniquely powerful bond.

snacks for breastfeeding moms

Breastfeeding requires good nutrition for mom too. Staying hydrated and having easy to grab healthy foods can help you care for yourself and your baby. Some snack ideas are:

  • Apple and almonds
  • Cheese or cottage cheese with fruit
  • Fruit and veggie smoothie
  • Cooked sushi with salmon or shrimp
  • Homemade soup or stew
  • Kefir and yogurt drinks

Dayton Children's lactation clinic

Breastfeeding is natural, but we know mothers can experience challenges with it. Our experienced lactation specialists are here to help support families navigate their breastfeeding journey. We feel that every drop counts and should be celebrated. That’s why we are very excited to share our outpatient lactation clinic services. Benefits of our services include:

  • Help with latch or supply concerns
  • Monitoring baby’s nutrition and growth
  • Returning to work and/or pumping
  • Collaboration with other Dayton Children’s disciplines when needed
  • Introducing solids or a bottle when mom decides it’s time to wean.

Learn more about our program or to schedule a consultation click here, or call us at 937-641-3185.